MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte called on banks to extend the repayment terms for loans made by small businesses that were affected by the COVID-19 crisis.
During his fifth State of the Nation Address, Duterte called on financial institutions to help micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs) whose operations were severely affected by the lockdowns imposed by the government to curb the spread of COVID-19.
“I also enjoin the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and the banks operating in the country to provide regulatory relief for our MSMEs and allow loan payment extension without incurring penalties and charges,” Duterte said.
Duterte earlier said the government, through the Department of Trade and Industry had been helping MSMEs by providing loans through the CARE or COVID Assistance to Restart Enterprises program.
“We need your help to prevent the collapse of companies saddled with accumulated amortizations and payables caused by closure of their businesses at the height of the strict quarantine periods.”
Earlier, Duterte also called on property owners with MSME tenants to be “fair and compassionate” with their rents.
He asked them to grant their MSME tenants a grace period and payments deferment to help recover from the economic impact of the COVID-19 quarantine measures.
“Ito ang panahon para suportahan natin ang ating mga kababayan na nagnenegosyo at gumawa ng mga produktong sariling atin.”
(This is the time for us to support our countrymen who engage in business and who make products that are ours.)